Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Stitch Fix #2

For my second fix, my theme was airport chic.  I have been traveling for work, and I always feel like such a slob when I get off the plane.  My stylist Brittany did not disappoint, and I received another fabulous box.  I will tell you upfront that I only ended up keeping two of the five items she sent to me, but I found two pieces that I would not have discovered on my own.  I feel like I already have a good wardrobe foundation, but I am looking to augment with items that I wouldn't necessarily pick out for myself.  Let's get into the details.

Papermoon Pensacola Lace Back Knit Top ($54):  I really wanted to love this top.  Brittany suggested that I pair it with leggings, knee-high boots, and my Bancroft necklace from my first fix for for a comfortable and chic look.  I wear leggings most of the time when I travel, so this was right up my alley!  However, the top did me no favors in the figure department (I ended up looking pretty lumpy).  The lace detail that covered the back was beautiful (and not see through, which is a bonus for me).  I just couldn't pull this one off, so to the return envelope it went.

Laju Valora Embroidered Top ($58):  I was so excited to see that this top was included in my fix.  I had pinned this to my Pinterest board, and thought it would be a great addition to my closet.  The embroidery detail was beautiful in person, and this is a top that can easily be dressed up or down. The top was a little wrinkly from shipping, but I realized that I was running out of time to send back the items that I wasn't going to keep (and scrambled to do this photo shoot).  This was a keeper!

Margaret M Emer High Waisted Trouser ($98):  I fell in love with Emers during my first fix, and even pinned a few pairs to my board asking for more.  I am so happy that my second pair was basic black, because they could not be more versatile.  I also like the way by rear looks in them (almost like it has some kind of shape to it).  These were definite keepers as well!

Diba Adela Laser Cut T-Strap Sandals ($75):  Did you know that Stitch Fix now carries shoes?  I was super excited to receive this pair in my box.  They were both cute and comfortable, and fit me really well.  My only issue with these was that I owned another pair similar enough that I couldn't justify keeping these (but that says a lot about Brittany getting my style).  I ultimately ended up sending these back.

Here are the top, pants, and shoes together.  There is no denying that they make a completely adorable outfit.  This is absolutely my style, and absolutely something I would wear.

Collective Concepts Andersson Printed Kimono ($48):  I did ask that Brittany send a kimono in my fix so I could try out something for the summer that wasn't a cardigan.  She suggested that I wear it over the top and pants for an easy and professional travel look.  I loved this concept, however the kimono was simply too big on me, and completely swallowed my shape.  I loved the material, the embroidered edges, and the pattern.  I may ask to try again in my next fix, but size down to see if I can pull it off.  I ultimately had to send this one back.

Since the kimono didn't work out so well, I grabbed a short sleeved cardigan and ballet flats from my closet to put together an outfit that I would wear to work or even on a plane.  If I wasn't convinced to keep the top and pants before, I was completely sold now.

I would consider my second fix a complete success!  For me, it isn't about having a five out of five every time. I really enjoy the process of have a stylist pick out pieces that I might not choose for myself and discovering new brands.  A lot of the fun is in the surprise (although I do admit to peeking on the Stitch Fix app, once my package has been sent).

If you are interested in trying your own Stitch Fix, here is my referral link  (I get a Stitch Fix credit if you use my link).  Once you create your own account, you take a style profile quiz to help you stylist identify your likes and wants.  You are also encouraged to create a Pinterest board, where you can pin items that suit your style and even request items from other people's fixes that you want for yourself. There is a styling fee of $20 per fix, which goes towards keeping any items you decide that you can't live without.  If you keep all 5 items they send you, you get an additional 25% off of your entire order. 

It is worth mentioning that you can have fixes sent to you as often or infrequently as you want.  There is an option for automatic fixes (delivered in intervals of your choosing), as well as an option for a one time fix.  Either way, you get to choose the approximate delivery date.  You can also choose not to have certain types of items or colors sent in your fixes.  You can even choose items for upcoming events (think wedding season shopping) and the price points you are comfortable spending.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Georgia Aquarium

Since we moved to Georgia, our life has centered around putting our new house together and dealing with our dog issues.  That hasn't really left a lot of time for us to explore our new city. However, on February 1, I officially turned 40 years old (gasp)!  I had been dying to check out the Georgia Aquarium for years, and this seemed like the perfect day to take off of work and go for a visit.  Plus, admission is free on your birthday, which was an offer I couldn't refuse.

I had been hearing how amazing this place is for years, and it did not disappoint.  It is the largest aquarium in the Western Hemisphere.  We easily spent the day there, checking everything out.  

When we walked in, we entered a large room full of color and light.  The space was divided into five specific galleries, which surrounded this central room.  There was also a cafeteria and a gift shop. 

There was no specific order that the aquarium should be viewed in.  We happened to get there about fifteen minutes before the dolphin show was going to start, so that was our first stop.  

As you are walking in to the Dolphin Tales gallery, there is a huge tank where you can watch the dolphins playing.  Beyond the tank is a big theater where you can watch a half hour dolphin show.  No photography was allowed (and was strictly enforced), but it is definitely worth catching if you are there during showtime.

Tropical Diver was the second gallery we explored.

Garden eels, poking up from their homes in the sand.
I am pretty sure these cuttlefish were posing for me
A graceful sea nettle
I love watching the jellyfish glide around their tanks
A clown fish in an anemone
A harlequin snake eel, which is very cool from behind the glass. 
The next gallery (and probably the most popular) was Ocean Voyager.  This is the only place in North America that has whale sharks.  There is even a live webcam, if you want to check them out from the comfort of your living room.

A sawfish
It is hard to tell form this picture, but the manta rays are huge
Trying to give a little perspective on the size of the whale shark.
An alternate view of a whale shark swimming by.
The fourth gallery was Cold Water Quest.  This was where most of the mammals hang out.

We got to watch a sea otter feeding
We were also on time for the penguin feeding
The beluga whales were spectacular and very playful.
The fifth gallery was River Scout.

The piranhas were easily my favorite thing in this gallery.  There were a little bit creepy (I have probably seen way too many horror movies).
I wasn't too keen on the electric eel either, but I can appreciate him from behind the glass.
There was an additional exhibit called Aquanaut Adventure, which was geared towards kids.  However, that is where these guys were hanging out.

During our time at the aquarium, we made friends with a docent who told us about the All-Access Backstage Pass.  For an extra $15, you can take a behind the scenes tour, and see the inner-working of the aquarium.  If you visit, I highly recommend doing this.

This is the top of the Ocean Voyager exhibit
We got very close to the whale shark feeding
We got to watch some training for the new seal exhibit that is coming in March...
...And see the beluga whales from another perspective
The seals and beluga whales are kept in the same tank until the exhibit opens.  They can also be found together in nature.
This is the filtration system for the Tropical Diver exhibit
There is a wave machine that generates waves to keep the water in Tropical Diver oxygenated.  This is what it looks like from within the exhibit (you can also watch it on the aquarium webcam).  
On the tour, you get to see how the wave is created.
To wrap up, a little information on how much food it takes to keep this aquarium going.

I have a feeling this will be a place we visit many more times over the years.  There are additional tours that you can take for extra money that involve one on one encounters with penguins and sea otters, which are two items most definitely on my bucket list.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Recent Reads: Some John Green, A Little Smut, and Two Mysteries


It occurred to me recently that I hadn't done any updates on what I had been reading for the second half of 2015.  I also decided that it was time to try a new format for doing my book reviews, where you can click on the book above to find it on Amazon and get a brief synopsis.  It is also one of my first stabs at using affiliate links, which means that I get a small commission if you buy any of them using my link.

Over the summer, I tackled the After series, after Kristina from Pretty, Shiny, Sparkly recommended it on one of her vlogs.  These books are racy and graphic and a bit Fifty Shades of Greyish, however with much better writing and more interesting characters.  I normally get bored when I read a series by the time I get around to the third book, but I listened to the four of these straight through.  The writing was engaging enough to keep me wanting to know what happened next.  

My husband and I (and technically our three dogs) listened to Don't Look Back on our cross-country road trip out to Atlanta.  It was a pretty engrossing "who is this guy really" kind of mystery.  I listened to Reconstructing Amelia on my daily work commute.  There is a mystery surrounding the circumstances of fifteen year old Amelia's death.  Her mother has to put the pieces of the past together to determine if her daughter committed suicide or if her death was something more sinister.  I wasn't expecting the ending at all.  

Finally, I listened to the two John Green's novels on plane trips across the country.  The Fault In Our Stars is still my favorite book of his, but these were both fun reads.  John Green has a way of writing teenagers that get you emotionally invested in their lives.  I don't know how he does it, but the man can tell a good story.

Have you read any good books lately?  I am always looking for new books to add to my list.

I'm Erin

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Hi, I am Erin. Transplanted east coaster, living on the left coast. I love to take pictures and read fashion magazines.... and to talk about nothing in particular (ok, and my dogs).

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